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Staff Correspondent
The Election Commission (EC) may announce the schedule of the next parliamentary elections within a week.
The full commission led by the chief election commissioner (CEC) KM Nurul Huda will meet President M Abdul Hamid today on announcement of the schedule for the 11th parliamentary polls, and inform him about the overall preparation.
The EC has asked the education ministry to complete all examinations by December 10. Besides, the commission has asked law enforcement to seize all illegal arms and arrest criminals and drug addicts before the polls. EC sources said, the commission plans to hold the 11th parliamentary polls by the last week of December, and will announce the schedule in the first week of November.
EC secretary, Helaluddin Ahmed, made the revelation to reporters, after an inter-ministerial meeting between the EC and 23 ministries and departments at Nirbachan Bhaban, in the city’s Agargaon on Wednesday.
“We may announce the polls schedule of the next parliamentary elections within a week,” he said, adding, “We have completed most of the preparatory works on holding the elections. The commission has already completed 80 per cent work for the next general elections,” he also said.
He said, the commission has procured the electoral equipment and now the EC is waiting to send the equipment to the parliamentary constituencies.
The EC secretary said, the commission will use the new technology—electronic voting machines (EVMs) in the next parliamentary polls on a limited scale.
“For creating a peaceful environment in the polls, the commission has asked law enforcement to arrest criminals, drug addicts and seize all illegal arms,” he said, adding that the EC has asked the Bangladesh Bank to send the list of loan defaulters before submission of the nomination papers for the next parliamentary polls.
“We have asked the education ministry to complete all kinds of examinations by December 10 as the EC plans to hold the polls in December,” Helal said.
According to Article 123 (3) (a), the next general election must be held 90 days prior to the expiry of parliament’s tenure. Article 123(3) (b) stipulates that in case of a dissolution of parliament otherwise than by reason of such expiration, the election must be held within 90 days of such dissolution.
The first session of the 10th parliament began on January 29, 2014. The 10th parliamentary election was held on January 5, 2014, while the EC had earlier announced the polls schedule on November 25. The first session of the ninth parliament began on January 25, 2009.
The tenure of the 10th parliament expires on January 28, 2019. The countdown will start from October 30.
Under the constitution the next government will have to be formed before January 24, 2019.